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Maximizing Anterior Esthetics Maximizing Anterior Esthetics

Author(s):

Vincent G. Kokich, Sr., DDS, MSD;Frank M. Spear, DDS, MSD, Vincent O. Kokich, Jr.

Date Added:

1/1/0001


Summary:

As the new millennium gradua lly unfolds. the impact on dentistry will be substantial. In the past, the paradigm that controlled dental education and clinical dentistry was devoted to repairing the aftermath of the two major dental diseases (dental caries and periodontitis). However, in most regions of the United States, dental caries in younger individuals has decreased substantially for the past 25 years, due to fluoridation and the use of occlusal sealants. Furthermore, the number of patients with periodontitis also has decreased gradually over the past 10 to 15 years, and today, periodontists are "growing" bone in periodontal patients, rather than removing it. As the beneficiaries of good dental health in the past become consumers of dental care now and in the future, their personal goals and desires regarding dental care are changing from the gradual repair of old failing restorations to the proactive alteration of their anterior dental esthetics. Esthetic dentistry has become a growing portion of most dental practices. Bleaching, anterior single-tooth implants, veneers, all-porcelain crowns, ridge augmentation, and esthetic gingivall surgery have become routine today in dentistry. And the future only looks brighter. But where does the orthodontist fit inlo this futuristic picture? How will the orthodontic team member contribute to the esthetic improvement of the restorative patient? What esthetic problems should be corrected, and which would go unnoticed by most laypersons? This article will call upon recent research to illustrate the orthodontist's responsibility and role in maximizing dental esthetics for the restorative patient. The information will be divided into four parts based upon the esthetic perspective that is being evaluated: midline, mediolateral incisal angulation, incisal plane, and gingiva-to-lip relationship.

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